ACC take an early Topklasse lead
Last season’s finalists ACC went clear at the head of the Topklasse table on Saturday with a comfortable 62-run victory over closest rivals HCC, while defending champions VRA Amsterdam stayed in touch with a 34-run over Excelsior ’20 Schiedam.
Put in to bat at De Diepput by HCC skipper Tom de Grooth, ACC were set on the track of a solid total by contributions by Steven de Bruin (48) and François Le Clus (51), but the decisive innings came from Graeme van Buuren who, coming in at 126 for three, hammered a 40-ball 80 not out to see his side to 241 for five.
HCC’s reply had a disastrous start when Mark Jonkman was run out with just a single run on the board, and the home side were in further trouble when Rassie van der Dussen was caught behind by De Bruin off the bowling of Mudassar Bukhari.
Only Cameron Borgas, with 57, was able to mount any effective resistance, but he was eventually bowled by Van Buuren and with Le Clus taking three for 30 with his leg breaks the HCC response ended on 179.
In a hard-fought contest at Thurlede, VRA again posted the highest total of the day with 256 for seven, thanks to a splendid 81 from Barry Rhodes, well supported in a crucial fifth-wicket stand by Eric Szwarczynski’s 39. Excelsior skipper Daan van Bunge took four catches, including a very fine one to remove his opposite number Peter Borren.
Excelsior began in top gear, Stephan Myburgh blasting 70 as 72 runs came from the first ten overs, and then Fred Klokker and Van Bunge took their side steadily towards victory with a strong third-wicket stand. Amil Prasad turned things round by removing Klokker for 41 and then Rudi Hillermann in the same over, but the key wicket was that of Van Bunge, bowled by Sohail Bhatti for 57.
Prasad finished with three for 36 and with Tom Cooper registering the same figures Excelsior were eventually dismissed for 222.
In a match transferred to the Roggewoning ground in Wassenaar, Quick Haag beat Dosti Amsterdam by 28 runs, but that result was a lot closer than had at one stage seemed likely, as Dosti collapsed to 49 for seven in reply to Quick’s 208 for seven.
Quick captain Henk-Jan Mol, who had earlier made 55 and shared in a fourth-wicket partnership of 111 with Amol Muzumdar (68), caused some of the havoc by taking three wickets for 4 runs at the start of his spell, but the Dosti innings was turned around by an astonishing onslaught by A Uniyal, playing his first match on his return to the Amsterdam club.
Uniyal smashed seven sixes in his 83-ball knock of 89, but although he received fine support from Victor Grandia, who contributed 32 to go with his figures of four for 27 in the Quick innings, in the end the gap was too great, and the Dosti reply closed on 180.
The closest match of the day was at Hazelaarweg, where Hermes-DVS Schiedam held on to beat VOC Rotterdam by a single wicket with seven balls to spare.
VOC reached 50 for one after winning the toss, but then a middle-order collapse saw then dismissed for a disappointing 157, opener Bas Zuiderent top-scoring with 25. Hermes in their turn slumped to 11 for three, but were rescued by a 98-run partnership between Greg Todd (36) and Mark Craig (68).
Both were removed by Australian left-arm spinner Trent Keep, who took four for 28 in his Topklasse debut, and at 135 for nine Hermes seemed to be heading for defeat and VOC for their first win of the campaign.
But Renzo Borrani and Niels Woermeijer gradually picked up the runs, and with a costly missed catch when eight runs were still needed, the final pair were able to take their side to victory.